Innovation districts are areas featuring dense communities of startups, research-oriented institutions, tech, creative companies and entrepreneur support organizations. They facilitate the creation and commercialization of new ideas and support the city’s economy.
In St. Louis, we have many such innovation hubs. These districts are the hubs you’ll be working in and around the most as you build your startup as they all offer shared and dedicated office or lab space and incredible coworking facilities and weekly networking opportunities.
Below is an introductory guide to the core hubs of innovation in St. Louis. We’ve simplified things to show where a specific startup ecosystem is especially dense with business resources, but remember the networks ultimately span the entire system and everyone is working together towards one mission: to build a greater St. Louis.
News and Stories from Innovation Districts in St. Louis
Once the 4th largest city in the USA, Downtown St. Louis is re-emerging as one of the nation’s fastest-growing innovation hubs.
Supporting nearly 200 different organizations, at the center of the St. Louis’s downtown innovation community is T-REX, a business incubator and coworking space that plays home to startups, venture capital firms (VCs), entrepreneur support organizations (ESOs), and accelerator programs.
When upstart companies are ready to fly the nest investment funds and capital connections created by the Missouri Technology Corporation, St. Louis Regional Chamber, and Downtown STL Inc are made available to help founders find offices, attract talent and… even purchase and refurbish a historic building.
Yep, just talk to SwipeSum, Covo, Label Insight, Less Annoying CRM and Clever Real Estate about how their startup journeys started from downtown St. Louis.
News and Stories from the Downtown Innovation Community in St. Louis
The Cortex Innovation Community is a vibrant 200- acre innovation hub and technology district integrated into St. Louis’ historic Central West End, surrounded by nationally ranked universities and medical centers.
In response to job losses from Pfizer due to globalization, Cortex was created to stem the brain drain of the incredible professional BioTech talent that continued to call the city home.
Through an unprecedented collaboration between five anchor partners, a corporate alliance comprised of Washington University in St. Louis, University of Missouri-St. Louis, Saint Louis University, BJC Healthcare and Missouri Botanical Garden formed to create a single bio-medical innovation district: CORTEX.
The long bet paid off. 20 years later, CORTEX’s innovation footprint spans many more industry sectors is now home to more than 350 organizatios and five unique innovation centers: Center for Emerging Technologies, BioGenerator, CIC St. Louis, Venture Café, and BioSTL.
News and Stories from the Cortex Innovation Community in St. Louis
39 North is the St. Louis region’s AgTech Innovation District, occupying 600 acres in the heart of the Midwest. The district is home to international leaders in agriculture research and commercialization, bioscience startups, and the highest concentration of professional plant scientists in the world.